Gravel to Protect Against Rats

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Big Bubba, Nov 17, 2014.

  1. Big Bubba

    Big Bubba Out Of The Brooder

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    I am absolutely at my wit's end in dealing with rats. The rats are winning and I'm losing in a big way.

    I've put hardware cloth on the inside and outside. They found one hole to get in between that and made it home. I wasn't happy but at least they weren't in the coop. This morning I see a rat managed to break down my inside hardware cloth.

    So, I'm back to the drawing board. Let me know what you think of this plan. The hardware cloth is 16 inches deep. So far none of them seems to gotten under it. How about it if dig along the hardware cloth and bury gravel next to it. I'll do it on both sides.

    Do you think that will keep the pests out?
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    It is amazing how small a hole a small rat (mouse) can get through. Since they can reproduce at around 4 months, they don't have to be very big to make more rats.

    After trying everything else, I finally resorted to poison -- not the old warfarin, which readily kills animals that eat the dead rats, but a chemical called bromadiolone. It's sold under various brans names, including Tomcat and OneBite. Tomcat also makes a bait station available, basically a box with holes that lets mice and rats in but are too small for anything like a chicken, or your cat. My research indicated that the chicken or cat would have to eat a whole lot of dead rats to get sick -- and I never found the bodies, anway. Evidently they go off somewhere to die.

    Poison is hardly an ideal solution for anything, but it might be worth considering in your situation.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Big Bubba

    Big Bubba Out Of The Brooder

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    Judy - appreciate the reply.

    The poison trap via Tomcat has been setup for about 3 weeks now. They haven't taken a nibble yet. I think I've tried also every means out there. I have tried the Rat Zapper, Havahart, and snap traps. I even tried shooting them and putting my dog on them. The bottom line is I'm losing and the rats are when.

    But, what I really just want to accomplish at this point is make it impossible for them to get in the coop.
     
  4. gawildlife

    gawildlife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It sounds like you're competing with an established food source with them eating your feed. When trapping or baiting animals it's always harder, sometimes impossible, to draw them away to another area to be trapped or baited.
    Example, this time of year is my busiest with squirrels in structures. I don't even bother with cages and baits this time of year with all the acorns, hickory and pecans on the ground. Instead I rely solely upon traps placed over the entry points so the draw is not the food.
    When competing with an established food source you either need traps at the food source or on the established travel routes or you need to eliminate the food source and supply an easily found alternate source which is your traps or bait.
     
  5. Naser

    Naser Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One thing only works with rodents. RAT PROOF FEEDER
    Try Wright feeder, treadle feeder or grandpa's feeder.
    No matter how much poison or how many traps you get, rats will outnumber whatever you bring.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2014
  6. gawildlife

    gawildlife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Exactly right. In this case an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Free access to food always compounds rodent issues as fat rats are profoundly more reproductively successful, often breeding faster than the catch rate. I once had a rat job in a feed and grain where they got into a truckload of dog food. I unloaded a gross, as in twelve dozen, of snap traps on the set up. I counted almost sixty caught before I could get them all set (the traps were going off right and left as I was setting them) and walk away. On the next check a day later I quit counting at two hundred as it was hard to say with all the body parts as they had cannibalized the ones in the traps. We trapped like that for well over a week before the catch slowed and even then we finished the job off with liquitox.
    To this day, five years later, that building still reeks of rat piss.
     
  7. 123RedBeard

    123RedBeard Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If your gonna dig out and put in gravel ... mix some concrete and water with it too!

    Sounds like they like what your feeding them ...
     

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